The holiday season is upon us, which means Jeff Bezos's elves are two-day shipping tons of toys and goodies across the land or whatever. It also means it's a great time for package thieves to start stealing boxes off of porches. But while most of us just whine about our missing mail to Amazon, an ex-NASA engineer named Mark Rober decided to harness the genius that helped build the Curiosity rover and take matters into his own hands.
On Monday, Rober posted a ten-minute video to YouTube mapping out how he designed and built a trap for package robbers. The thing looks like an Apple HomePod, but it's actually a brilliant booby trap that douses thieves in glitter and fart spray—and records the whole debacle for our viewing pleasure.
It all started six months ago, when Rober first caught a pair of people swiping a box from his porch on his security camera. "If you've ever been in a situation like this, you just sort of feel violated," Rober explains in the video. "I took this to the police, and even with the video evidence, they said it was just not worth their time to look into... I just felt like something needs to be done to take a stand against dishonest punks like this."
And take a stand, he did. Rober engineered a bait package that, when opened, would immediately spin a shit ton of super-fine glitter everywhere, and then let loose a torrent of a foul-smelling fart spray every 30 seconds. He also built in four phones with recording abilities and a GPS locator, so he could relish in the reactions of the unsuspecting thieves—and then go pick up the box afterward to do it again.
Apparently, Rober's neighborhood is plagued by more roving gangs of thieves than New York in The Warriors, because he managed to trick at least five separate people with his glitter bomb trap, and the footage is truly priceless.
"The moral of the story is, just don’t take other peoples’ stuff," Rober says. "Not only is it not cool, but on the plus side, you’ll never find yourself in this situation." Give the video of Rober celebrating the holiday season the Kevin McCallister way a watch above.
Update (12/21): Unfortunately, it turns out parts of Rober's video were staged. Two of the five "thieves" were actually acquaintances of a person who helped him make the video—though Rober says the other three are the real deal.
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